• Gutsy Baker

Gluten-Free Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (Dairy Free, Refined Sugar Free)

These cookies are gluten free, dairy free and refined sugar free! But you'd never know. They taste true to a classic bakery-style CCC!

When I say this is the PERFECT chocolate chip cookie, it’s not a lie. This cookie is better than most chocolate chip cookies I used to eat that were full of dairy, sugar, and regular flour. But this cookie is dairy free, gluten free and refined sugar free! I found a secret to make paleo brown sugar and it worked perfectly here. I also browned my vegan butter before mixing it into my dough and it just elevated this cookie. When I say I outdid myself with this cookie…. ahhh you just have to try them for yourself!


These gluten free chocolate chip cookies are full of flavor, sweet & salty and have that iconic chocolate chip cookie taste that you’d get at a bakery. The secret to the best chocolate chip cookie is butter and brown sugar. Butter gives it that iconic taste and the brown sugar gives it the chewy middle. I used vegan butter here (Miyoko’s) and it browned perfectly. My secret to making a paleo brown sugar is adding a touch of blackstrap molasses to the coconut sugar before it is mixed into the rest of the ingredients. Molasses is the secret in traditional brown sugar, and adding a touch into the coconut sugar gave it the perfect soft brown sugar texture and the perfect taste and chew! I will be using this method moving forward in all my recipes that would normally use brown sugar. It was kind of life changing, in my baking life at least. I am so happy to create more paleo desserts with this!

But I wanted this cookie to taste like a REAL chocolate chip cookie, not an altered healthy version. So I’m happy to share with you all!

What do I need for gluten free brown butter chocolate chip cookies?

  • A saucepan for browning your butter

  • A baking sheet

  • A preferred cookie scoop for even, perfect cookies

What ingredients are in gluten free chocolate chip cookies?

All Purpose Gluten Free Flour: I used Bob’s 1:1 GF flour here, but any all purpose flour should work, gluten free or regular

Coconut Sugar: This is my go-to for sweetening all my baked goods. It’s a neutral flavor and low glycemic so works well on low sugar diets. I combined the coconut sugar in this recipe with a touch of molasses to substitute brown sugar and it worked perfectly

Molasses: Just a touch of molasses in these cookies to create a brown sugar substitute. This is what gives your cookies a chewy texture. Blackstrap molasses is rich in iron and minerals and actually a superfood!

Baking soda: This is what makes your cookies spread

Sea salt: A touch of sea salt

Vegan Butter: You will brown your butter to make your cookies taste amazing. I used Miyoko’s butter here, but any vegan stick butter should work, or regular grass fed butter

Eggs: This recipe calls for one egg and one egg yolk, which also helps with the chewiness. You may also use aquafaba as a vegan substitute (the brine from a can of chickpeas)

Vanilla Extract: Because we put this in all baked goods, am I right?

Chocolate Chips: I love to use paleo chocolate chips

Are these cookies easy to make?

Yes! The most "tricky" part of this recipe is browning the butter, which is pretty easy. And is optional but highly recommended). But it’s a simple, drop cookie recipe.


  • 1 3/4 cup of All Purpose Gluten Free Flour

  • 3/4 tsp of baking soda

  • 3/4 tsp of sea salt* (see notes)

  • 1 cup of coconut sugar

  • 1 1/2 tsp of blackstrap molasses

  • 1 egg + 1 egg yolk (or 4 tbsp of aquafaba for vegan)

  • 1 tbsp of vanilla extract

  • 3/4 cup of vegan butter or unsalted grass fed butter (I used Miyoko’s Vegan Butter, it browns well)*

  • 1 cup of dark chocolate chunks or chips of choice


  1. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

  2. Over medium heat on the stove, heat your vegan butter in a saucepan. This is going to brown your butter. Heat until the butter gets frothy and turns a darker yellow or light brown, about 3-5 minutes. Make sure you don’t overcook, as the liquid will evaporate and you may end up with drier dough. Remove from stove and let cool so it’s not too hot, just warm.

  3. In a medium bowl, mix together the coconut sugar and the molasses. Mix well, it will start to resemble a traditional soft brown sugar texture. Now add in your cooled butter and whisk well until smooth. Now fold in egg yolks and whisk well again. The more you whisk, smoother your cookie texture will be. You can also use a hand mixer for this. Finally mix in your vanilla extract.

  4. In another medium bowl, combine your flour, sea salt, baking soda and mix well. You are now going to incorporate this into your wet ingredient mixture.

  5. Slowly add the dry mix to the wet, add in 1/2 of the dry mix to start. And then spoon in the rest while you mix the dough. This is to ensure your cookie dough will not be too dry, spending on how much of the butter evaporated while cooking. I have never had this problem and my cookie dough has always been perfect. It should end up as a nice firm dough, not sticky and not dry or crumbly. Should be scoopable, the texture of a soft Play Doh.

  6. Add in the chocolate chips, putting few aside to add on top later. Roll the dough into a ball, wrap tightly in plastic and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to chill. Can be up to overnight.

  7. Once dough is chilled, preheat your oven to 350F. Take a 1 tbsp cookie scooper (1 oz) and scoop out the dough in balls and place them onto your lined cookie sheets. You do not have to press down the dough. These are drop cookies and actually bake best when they are put in the oven as balls.

  8. Repeat scooping and placing on the cookie sheet until all dough is used. Place the extra chocolate chips on top and sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Bake for 8-10 minutes until edges are JUST set and the inside is still a bit undercooked. This is how you get a nice chewy center. If you bake too long, they will come out a bit dry. I pulled mine out at 8 minutes and they firmed up nicely when cooled.

  9. Transfer cookies from the baking sheet to a cooling rack and let cool completely. Store in an airtight container on the counter for 3 days, and then transfer to the fridge for another 7 days. These store well in the freezer, too.

  10. Dip in {oat} milk and enjoy!!


  • You should use unsalted butter here. If you only have salted butter, you want to reduce your sea salt in your recipe to 1/2 tsp, otherwise your cookies may be too salty for your liking.

  • Browning the butter for these cookies ups the flavor and cookie game. However when browning the butter, make sure you only simmer it until it’s frothy and just a hint of brown. You don’t want too much of the butter to evaporate, resulting in drier cookies.

  • I have tried browning Earth Balance butter sticks and unfortunately it did not work. If you use Earth Balance butter, I suggest you just soften the butter instead.

  • To ensure your cookies are not too dry (if you burn off too much of the butter), you should add in 1/2 of your dry ingredients first, mix, and then add the remainder in slowly to make sure your batter will not end up too dry. This hasn’t happened to me! But your dough should be the texture of a soft Play Doh, not crumbly and not sticky.

  • Aquafaba is the brine from a can of chickpeas. You will need 4 tbsp in this recipe to equal out 1 egg plus one egg yolk.

  • Take your cookies out of the oven as soon as the edges set, about 8-9 minutes if using 1 tbsp per cookie. If you use a larger scoop for your cookies they make take longer. But taking the cookies out a bit underbaked will give them the perfect chewy gooey texture.

Please leave comments, questions, and ratings below! I love to hear feedback on how you made this recipe, and it helps others as well. As always, tag me in your creations on Instagram @gutsy_baker!

xo Stephanie

If you are looking for a Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookie, I have one here!